Charter of principles

Charter of principles2019-03-01T12:26:28+00:00

In November 2017, BCSD Portugal published its Charter of Principles inviting all companies to subscribe it.

BCSD Portugal’s Charter of Principles establishes the principles that are the guidelines for good business management. It allows any subscriber company to be recognized among its customers, suppliers and society in general by the adoption of solid commitments of sustainability. The Charter encourages subscribers to go beyond legal compliance by adopting recognized norms and practices aligned with ethical, social, environmental, and quality management standards in any context of the global economy.

Why a BCSD Portugal Charter of Principles?

Sustainability issues are increasingly relevant throughout the value chain and in the relationships established between customers, suppliers and partners. In a global society, ultimately all companies are suppliers and customers, regardless of their size.

Many national and international tenders already include requirements associated with corporate sustainability practices as selection factors. The sustainable management of companies is thus increasingly a factor of competitiveness that needs to be recognized and encouraged. It is in this context that BCSD Portugal’s Charter of Principles arises and that it intends to create a voluntary reference adapted to companies of various dimensions, which intends to encourage the massification of sustainable management practices.

The Charter encompasses a set of principles that are the guidelines for good business management. Although it is emphasized that these are fundamental principles of sustainability in scope, it was decided to leave reference in the title to the “Charter of Principles”, omitting the word “sustainability”, since, in reality, these are principles of good business management. As BCSD Portugal is a business association, this Charter constitutes a Charter of Principles on good business management practices.

The Charter is inspired by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work of the International Labour Organization and by the United Nations Global Compact. It also encourages the reporting of non-financial information by companies that are not yet directly covered by Decree-Law no. 89/2017, of July 28, regarding the obligation to disclose annually non-financial information and information on diversity by certain large companies.

Charter of principles



1. I am not a member of BCSD Portugal. Can I endorse the Charter of Principles?2019-02-22T16:35:53+00:00

Yes, any company aligned with the established principles can subscribe to the Charter.

2. Is there any follow-up on compliance with the principles established in the Charter by the subscribing companies?2019-02-22T16:36:18+00:00

Yes there is. All companies subscribing to BCSD Portugal’s Charter of Principles are invited to participate in the process of identifying indicators that will substantiate the effective fulfilment of the principles by the signatory companies. These indicators, inspired by the Global Reporting Initiative, will be simple indicators that allow an evolution of the companies’ performance over time and that SMEs and micro-enterprises can start this process in a practical but serious way. The identification of the indicators for each company will be based on a materiality analysis. Specific training will also be developed on the content of this Charter, as well as its application in the day-to-day business of companies, in order to enable organizations of all sizes to subscribe and implement the principles set out in BCSD Portugal’s Charter of Principles.

3. Are the members of BCSD Portugal obliged to subscribe to the Charter of Principles?2019-02-22T16:36:36+00:00

Adherence to the Charter of Principles is voluntary, and it is expected that all the members subscribe to it.

4. I am a microenterprise or an SME. Why should I sign the Charter?2019-02-22T16:37:01+00:00

The subscription of this Charter allows:

  • To undertake and communicate an explicit commitment to the management practices associated to sustainability, integrated in a process of co-development of the monitoring indicators;
  • Have access to training and data that allows each company to gradually implement the necessary procedures to be able to disseminate information on how they are complying with the Charter of Principles;
  • Prepare to be able to respond to requests for non-financial information by large companies covered by Decree-Law no. 89/2017 of July 28;
  • Being part of a network of companies that want to be distinguished by good management practices.


5. I am a large company and have a supplier code. Why should I sign the Charter?2019-02-22T16:37:25+00:00

The Charter of Principles of BCSD Portugal does not invalidate the charters that each company has specifically for its business. In fact, the Charter could induce more economic agents to develop sustainable management practices and thus help the economy in this way. A large company signing this Charter will:

  • Be a catalyst in the promotion of the principles of sustainable management along its value chain;
  • Communicate the implementation of actions that scale up the application of sustainable management practices;
  • Report in a simple and clear way the fulfilment of the Charter of Principles.
6. How can I report that my company / organization has signed the Charter?2019-02-22T16:38:16+00:00

All subscribers will be able to use the seal of the Charter in their media channels.

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